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Ubuntu Still Aims For Wayland in Quantal Quetzal

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the hard-to-please-everyone dept.

GUI 230

jones_supa writes "While there's still more than one month until the Ubuntu 12.10 feature freeze, Ubuntu developers continue to work towards their tight schedule of having Wayland serve as the compositor for the Quantal Quetzal release due out in October. Canonical's intends to provide smooth transitions from boot to shutdown. Wayland is also used for session switching and other operations, avoiding traditional VT switching, providing a consistent monitor layout, using the greeter as the lock screen, ensuring that locked sessions are actually secure from displaying, and showing the greeter while the session loads. Phoronix remains skeptical about Ubuntu making the deadline."

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230 comments

Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (2, Interesting)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | about 2 years ago | (#40601711)

>> Will applications need to be rewritten or modified to work on Wayland? Yes. (From TFA.)

As a developer, I'm about to get off the Ubuntu train. Every major release recently has required tweaking the UI (e.g., tray icon behavior changes). I'm not really looking forward to another migration, especially when there are Red Hat and SUSE users (who tend to buy more) who are looking for things too.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (5, Interesting)

DeathToBill (601486) | about 2 years ago | (#40601801)

Although the more detailed answer is that GTK/Qt apps will need recompiling with an updated library. If you use X11 directly, then you have more work - except that you can also run an X server within Wayland to support native X11 clients.

I've been impressed for some time with how well the Wayland developers have thought about backwards compatibility. X11 needs replacing; complaining that its different to X11 doesn't help solve the problems.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (4, Insightful)

devent (1627873) | about 2 years ago | (#40602839)

X11 needs to be replaced? Like my roof needs to be replaced because it works and have no holes in it? But it is old, I think about 15 years, so yeah it needs to be replaced.

X11 is old, but it works. I can have multiple monitors just fine, 3D effects are working fast, games are working. Also, it is supported by all hardware vendors like AMD, Nvidia, Intel. Also I have network transparency with no additional costs. Multi-User works just fine with very easy Ctrl+Alt+F1 up to F12. I don't know why you want something else. In KDE there is also a user switcher GUI way. Boot is smooth in Fedora 14, 15 and 16.

As long as there are no drivers from AMD, NVidia and Intel, Wayland will be a wet dream of a few developers. I do not need to go back to the time where the only graphics mode was Framebuffer. My impression is from the Ubuntu developers that they like some kids who are just pushing things like they want without any though about anything. Just to be different or "cool".

First the totally unnecessary changes in Gnome with the Close/Minimize buttons; then the not usable Unity; and now the Wayland, which will be usable only after more 5 years in development and testing.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603045)

Also, it is supported by all hardware vendors like AMD, Nvidia, Intel.

This. You need to be modded up. The only graphics vendor on board with Wayland is Intel.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (5, Insightful)

DeathToBill (601486) | about 2 years ago | (#40603163)

X11 is more like a roof that was originally a 40-foot timber yacht. You've turned it upside down and fixed it to the tops of the walls. Gradually, over the years, you've patched in the holes until it only leaks when the wind is in the West. You've figured out how to get a flue up through the thing. You've nailed a TV antenna to it, and sealed around the cable with silicone. When you put it there you never bothered to take the decks out, so it's almost impossible to get into and work on and the structural elements, optimised rather for the sea than for housing, make it not very useful for storage. You still have to repaint it with pretty expensive paint every five years or so, else it starts to rot, and for some reason it attracts lots of confused-looking seagulls.

Anyway, look at all the features! It's got a winged keel, a 200hp diesel engine, and a gorgeous timber and brass wheel. All the fittings are marine-grade stainless, the rigging was all almost brand-new when you installed the thing and in her day she'd do 27kt reaching across a good wind. Don't actually use much of that any more, of course, but still...

Technically the keel still violates local planning ordinance, and technically it still smells quite a bit of fish. But it's been there for 15 years and it works. There's no need to replace it.

What's that love? You want to build an extension? Ah.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (5, Informative)

DeathToBill (601486) | about 2 years ago | (#40603337)

And, in case you missed some of the metaphor there, the basic problem with X11 as a display system for desktop systems today is that none of the apps written for it actually use X11. Your multiple monitors work because of Xrandr - which isn't part of X11. Your 3D effects work by bypassing the X server and making OpenGL calls - not part of X11. It's supported by all the hardware vendors - and most of that support is in kernel drivers, not in the X server itself. VT switching works... more... or... less... until you'd actually like to switch VT before you get back from your coffee break, or your X server doesn't recover correctly. And, in case you missed it, they're not provided by X11. And I'm not sure what boot times have to do with it?

Your apps draw using Cairo or similar, not X11. They draw onto a buffer provided by the compositing extension, not X11. The buffer gets put into video memory by the compositor, not X11.

So why exactly are we keeping X11 hanging around? Why not get rid of it and halve the size of the display server code base, making it much easier to program against in the process? Why are we carting around a heuge amount of code that is of no modern relevance except to be able to claim that it is an X server? The maintenance burden of the current X server is too much and any thought of adding new capabilities horrific.

Otherwise, your arguments amount to, "No-one supports it yet so it's a waste of time." Good on Canonical for pushing it - if anyone has a vague chance of getting vendors to support it, it seems they might.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (1, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | about 2 years ago | (#40603563)

Why not get rid of it and halve the size of the display server code base, making it much easier to program against in the process?

Can you do this without sacrificing functionality? If so, do it. If not, you're writing Wayland.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (2, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | about 2 years ago | (#40603539)

Although the more detailed answer is that GTK/Qt apps will need recompiling with an updated library. If you use X11 directly, then you have more work - except that you can also run an X server within Wayland to support native X11 clients.

So what's to happen to our decades worth of work in innovative and configurable window managers? Am I expected to run an X server on top of Wayland just so I can keep the Fluxbox config I've grown accustomed to?

Choice of window manager is one of the best reasons to use a UNIX desktop. As I understand it, Wayland eliminates this choice entirely.

X11 needs replacing

Citation needed.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601823)

>> Will applications need to be rewritten or modified to work on Wayland? Yes. (From TFA.)

As a developer, I'm about to get off the Ubuntu train. Every major release recently has required tweaking the UI (e.g., tray icon behavior changes). I'm not really looking forward to another migration, especially when there are Red Hat and SUSE users (who tend to buy more) who are looking for things too.

No/Not-many (From TFA.)
The Ubuntu plan is for Wayland to be a system compositor, not a full X replacement. Most applications stay the same running under X. Just patches to X and the DM to get them working with Wayland.

X on Wayland is targeted as running at the same speed (or being more responsive) as just X alone.

A later (unplanned) release to Ubuntu may likely take the step of replacing X applications with ones running on Wayland but X will still run on top when needed.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602339)

Please explain to me how the addition of another abstraction layer and the loss of hardware acceleration (neither ATI nor nVidia even care about wayland) is resulting in a net speedup...

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (4, Informative)

snadrus (930168) | about 2 years ago | (#40602505)

Sure. X11 needs replacing because its hardware acceleration is worse than Wayland. X11 is actually many programs acting like layers: window mgr, compositor, greeter, locker, etc will be only 1 under Wayland. And still the design is simpler than any one. It's not that the code is being added, but that a no-longer-useful X11-style abstraction is being let-go.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (2, Informative)

babai101 (1964448) | about 2 years ago | (#40601853)

All of the X apps will remain compatible as they will also run an Xserver instance on top of wayland, it will not be that much PITA for the devs.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602003)

run an Xserver instance on top of wayland,

Which completely breaks the totally seamless integration of remote and local X apps (both 2D and 3D) that we have today.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (2)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about 2 years ago | (#40602139)

Ubuntu is the best thing to happen to Linux for all of us who dont use Linux. Its users have been faithfully beta testing for everyone else for the last 6 years :P

(For the record, if I was to switch my primary desktop back to Linux, theres a good chance it would be Ubuntu-- life is an adventure)

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602197)

Will applications need to be rewritten or modified to work on Wayland? Yes.

That's the cost of quitting X11.

TFA also says it will be running an X11 server inside of it to allow X11 applications to keep working.

Re:Ubuntu to developers: "pound sand" (1, Insightful)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | about 2 years ago | (#40602555)

Can't blame you, Ubuntu just can't stop jumping sharks...if only they could have stuck to being a normal fucking desktop distro, not only would Ubuntu be much more popular, but desktop Linux would be as well. When they moved the window control buttons to the left they had already gone off the deep end.

I have long dreamt of the day (2)

kiriath (2670145) | about 2 years ago | (#40601733)

That X would be replaced... and now after all this time? I'm not sure if I'm happy about it =\ It is very interesting to see that there is an effort in this area though, to be quite honest this is the first I am hearing of Wayland. Ubuntu seems to favor having one good release, and one less stable release. You have to get your bug fixing done somehow right?

Re:I have long dreamt of the day (4, Interesting)

Qwavel (733416) | about 2 years ago | (#40601831)

I have no comment on 'wayland good' versus 'wayland bad', but it is certainly a known quantity and it has been waiting in the wings to replace X for a while.

As you said, the dream of replacing X has been around for a very long time. No one has done it because it is a ton of work and because the changes are bound to piss off some developers and users (see "pound sand" post above).

I'm impressed that the Ubuntu folks are going to take this on and I wish them well. If they succeed then the rest of the distro's will probably follow suite.

Re:I have long dreamt of the day (5, Informative)

kriston (7886) | about 2 years ago | (#40601873)

I agree. Wayland needs to happen. We've wasted so much time, effort, and knowledge keeping X Windows up and running. I sometimes think about how much further along desktop Linux might be if we threw off the shackles of X Windows years ago. There's a reason Android and MacOS do not use X Windows.

Re:I have long dreamt of the day (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603059)

There is no such things as "xwindows" there is the "X Window System"

Android uses the framebuffer which sucks performance wise compared to X

The XiG implimentation of X with open group X11R6 (It is provided with XiG CDE and you can compile it really easily with icc) is ridiculously fast.

Xorg is a pretty crap implementation of X (As are most of the vendor ones Xsun / IBM's / HP's)

X itself cannot be that crap or the situation that exists whereby the old r200 ati drivers are (An order of magnitude) faster under XiG X than under Windows.

For full screen opengl X is bypassed cannot really think of much else that really needs the performance. (Don't care about wobbly windows or any of that dumb stuff). I use a few urxvt's / the odd uxterm and a browser.

Re:I have long dreamt of the day (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602081)

The Ubuntu folks aren't developing Wayland. Wayland is being developed pretty much entirely by Intel employees. Ubuntu is just planning to integrate it.

wayland is a bad choice (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601743)

Ubuntu is sparking a new 'unix war', dividing the linux ecosystem. It first pushed hard for its own Unity now with Wayland that breaks all current X apps. Theyr'e only in it for themselves.

Without X we will lose network transparency among many other great features. Let's not even mention the lack of gpu support to say the least.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601809)

I seriously doubt it will fracture linux any more than it already is. X will function as an add-on to wayland, so older apps and apps that need some specific X functionality will still be supported.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601833)

It isn't Linux most of us are worried about. The Linux people can do whatever they want to themselves. It's the consequences to the other UNIX like operating systems.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602047)

X will function as an add-on to wayland,

Yes, but this breaks the current seamless integration of remote and local apps that we have today. Presently, this works even for OpenGL based applications (although obviously slower over a network - but they run).

Seamless remote/local app integration is a cornerstone of Unix-based systems going back to at least the 1980's. Breaking this is unacceptable.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (-1, Troll)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about 2 years ago | (#40602231)

Allowing you to exist is also unacceptable.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602709)

Wow, man, you're really on fire today.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (5, Insightful)

lindi (634828) | about 2 years ago | (#40602399)

We don't currently have seamless integration of remote and local apps. For example, there is no audio or freedesktop.org notifications for remote applications. I personally use xpra to get this seamless integration. Even though the name has "x" in it is not fundamentally tied to X protocols and will probably be easy to port to wayland. The data transmitted over network is compressed bitmap.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602547)

Nobody, and I mean nobody is using remote X apps in this day and age. It goes back to the 1980s, yes, but it never went any further than that either.

It's a dead, dead, and dead feature, which nobody gives a toss about. Meanwhile, everybody is still paying the price for it existing.

Getting rid of it will be a great leap forward for Linux.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602663)

Troll much?

How about people with local home networks of 2 or 3 machines? I use it all the damn time - like every single day. I run apps from a big powerful central server and display them over "ssh -X" to my low power laptop.

I know you're just trolling, but people need to realize that people DO use "ssh -X" all the time. There are plenty of other repliers to this thread who have said they do as well.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603073)

You have absolutely no clue what you are talking about. Do you honestly think analysis of large (say 1 petabyte) dataset is going to be done on your lap/desk top? Do you honestly think that a comparison of multiple large datasets can be done with your lap/desk top? Try running IDV/NCL/R/MET on three WRF data sets with anything under 24cpus and 48gb of memory. Go back to something hard for you like creating new themes for KDE.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603589)

Yes, but this breaks the current seamless integration of remote and local apps that we have today.

Sort of. The Wayland devs say that the right place for this is "in the widget toolkits" - aka, QT, GTK, and so on. But that of course means we will end up with 3 or 4 different and probably incompatible solutions for network transparency, where today we have one.

X11 has a lot of problems, but Wayland is going to have its own.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (3, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#40601845)

Without X we will lose network transparency among many other great features. Let's not even mention the lack of gpu support to say the least.

VDPAU? They don't mention it, so I assume its going bye bye. Its kind of funny in that everything I use X for is everything Wayland opposes.

Just this weekend I was ssh -X into my mythtv backend to run the config program to add another capture card running X over the network, so my binary only nvidia cards using VDPAU have more to look at. I never use stupid animations and other 3-d foolishness on my desktop because I'm unimpressed; its the 2010's version of the 1980's demand that all desktop publishing projects must use a minimum of 50 different ugly fonts to show off that you can do it. I prefer my content to be my primary interest, not my window animations. Of course all of that is impossible over wayland. Thanks guys for exactly what I don't need! Maybe you could make it eink and touch screen only, just to annoy me further?

Re:wayland is a bad choice (-1, Flamebait)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about 2 years ago | (#40602317)

You could, you know... just not use it. Of course complaining like a little shit is so much more satisfying.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603049)

You could, you know... just not use it. Of course complaining like a little shit is so much more satisfying.

He's not complaining about Wayland existing. He is complaining about having it forced down his throat by Ubuntu.

Since it goes against your views, he's a complaining "little shit"? Is he supposed to take it lying down and let things progress the way he doesn't like? Sounds a little hypocritical. It is like telling GNU to quit complaining and if they don't like commercial software then don't use it. No need to advocate more free software. Of course ridiculing people is so much easier than responding to their comments rationally and taking their opinions seriously.

I think you should have been the one to keep one's thoughts to himself. At least do like everyone else and provide information that may eliminate some of the GP's fears.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602135)

Unity is just gnome-shell, and wayland will be backwards compatible with X.
Parent should be modded -1 Troll

Re:wayland is a bad choice (1)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about 2 years ago | (#40602343)

Unity is not gnome-shell.

Wayland is not compatible with X.

Any other crap you care to spew?

Re:wayland is a bad choice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603619)

Wayland is compatible with X; it was one of the primary design considerations, and a prominently mentioned feature on the wayland.org website. It's done by running a nested X server.

Wayland doesn't break X (1)

k(wi)r(kipedia) (2648849) | about 2 years ago | (#40602245)

Ubuntu is sparking a new 'unix war', dividing the linux ecosystem. It first pushed hard for its own Unity now with Wayland that breaks all current X apps. Theyr'e only in it for themselves.

Wayland doesn't break X, if by "break" you mean stop something from working. You can run Wayland concurrently with X. All those X-incompatible will simply run under X.

Re:Wayland doesn't break X (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602711)

You can run Wayland concurrently with X.

In a limited sense that is true, although it remains to be seen whether high performance 3D apps will work well that way.

But many things still break. E.g, from my bash window:

ssh -X remote_box
run_app

to display natively on Wayland desktop from my Konsole window. This will break, according to the Wayland people themselves.

Re:wayland is a bad choice (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about 2 years ago | (#40602657)

I dunno about GNOME3, but Wayland is certainly being embraced by Qt5 and is a target for KDE5, so it's not true that it's an Ubuntu only initiative. What I am curious about is whether there are any plans to get Wayland into the FreeBSD family of unixes - like FreeBSD, PC-BSD, DragonFly BSD, et al? Or into Minix?

Trust (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601745)

Who in their right mind would trust the Weyland-Yutani Corporation given what they did to the colonists on LV-426?

Unsurprising (4, Interesting)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#40601771)

Is there anyone who still thinks the Ubuntu release team prioritizes either usability or low number of bugs now? That's a serious question; I have no idea why this is considered a novel or even notable thing at this point. New Ubuntu release, leading edge software that's not ready for prime time is included, the release is at best beta quality software by any reasonable standard. Same story in every release going back to at least the 8.04 PulseAudio debacle.

Re:Unsurprising (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#40601945)

Maybe its trying to be modern art? Not supposed to be useful, or appealing, or beautiful, or traditional, or deeply thought provoking, just intended to momentarily inflame some passions or inspirations as people walk by on their way to doing real work on Mint and Debian and android and osx etc? A feeling, rather than a thought? Like gastrointestinal pain feeling vs the thought of refactoring a data parsing and importation routine? Of course those two are probably more closely related than you'd wish, but the point stands?

There's nothing inherently wrong about any work of art. You can be wrong about trying to "use it" for certain tasks, or maybe wrong to use it at all to do anything. But as a piece of art it can be interesting to look at, as a ... escapist form of fine art, before returning to the real world to do real stuff with real tools.

I don't particularly like Picasso's work. That it exists has no impact on the paper in my real world life, my junkmail, my reports, my old fashioned printed books...

Re:Unsurprising (1)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | about 2 years ago | (#40601965)

Well there is this constant tension when developing software in a competitive market. You want to release stuff that's as refined as possible, but you might lose users when competitors' products evolve faster than yours. So it's a constant attempt to balance innovation and refinement.

That being said, I do think Ubuntu has gotten the balance wrong over the past few years. At least speaking for myself, the lack of polish (especially desktop environments and graphics drivers) has cause me more distress than the distress I would have felt from slightly more stale packages.

Re:Unsurprising (2)

CapineiroCapaz (2491432) | about 2 years ago | (#40601981)

Who is forcing you to upgrade from 12.04 LTS? It will receive security fixes for years.

Re:Unsurprising (0)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#40602473)

Wait, you think I installed the steaming pile that is 12.04? That's pretty funny. I limped along with 10.04 until Debian Squeeze was released last year, and that was it for Ubuntu on my systems. I wanted no parts of Unity in 2011, same as I don't want Wayland in 2012.

Regardless, the "LTS" in Ubuntu's release titles is a joke. None of the bugs I ran into for 10.04 "LTS" were resolved via any means except "fixed in version ". When Ubuntu has a large and active backporting team worrying about their stable releases, such as RedHat's, then they can credibly use the LTS description.

Re:Unsurprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602967)

None of the bugs I ran into for 10.04 "LTS" were resolved via any means except "fixed in version ".

This is the problem with LTS releases in a nutshell. They don't actually fix bugs in the LTS releases. They just let you know that it was fixed for the most recent non-LTS version.

Re:Unsurprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602513)

If you need to upgrade your apps, such as to obtain some needed feature (e.g, we need some new stuff coming online in Blender), getting new apps working with increasingly old versions of Linux quickly becomes an impossible nightmare. They aren't in the repos, they no longer build from source on that crufty OS - it's an unreasonable proposition.

Developers won't meet fictional deadline? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601779)

I read the article and the Ubuntu Wayland wiki. The Ubuntu developers have not set any deadline, they don't appear to have set a specific goal, they're just continuing their work on Wayland as usual. The article appears to have just pulled the release target out of the author's arse and then claimed the developers won't make it in time. From the linked page:

"When will Wayland become the default on Ubuntu?
This has not been decided. This decision will be made at a future Ubuntu Developer Summit (UDS)."

So apparently the developers won't reach their goal that they haven't set. How is this a story?

Re:Developers won't meet fictional deadline? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603015)

Quantal Quetzal is quantal. That's why.

Quantal Quetzal Quisach Haderach (1)

Picass0 (147474) | about 2 years ago | (#40601805)

You know what I hate about Ubuntu? Sandworms.

Re:Quantal Quetzal Quisach Haderach (1)

Thud457 (234763) | about 2 years ago | (#40602387)

You know what I hate about Ubuntu? Sandworms.

Beetlejuice BEETLEJUICE BEETLEJ mmph!



really /.? that's some inept markup handling there...

Re:Quantal Quetzal Quisach Haderach (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603485)

It's spelled "Kwisatz Haderach".

Though, since this *is* Ubuntu, I guess you could say something like "Quantal Quetzal Qizarate." ...

(The source must flow!)

Bling (1)

spivster (1136769) | about 2 years ago | (#40601815)

I've tried several releases of Ubuntu over the years, only to give up in frustration at all the configuration needed just to (for example) get wireless to work. Finally, with Precise, Ubuntu "just works" (pretty much) right out of the box. Per TFA, Quantal will rely on fallbacks because AMD Catalyst and NVIDIA binary Linux graphics drivers won't work with Wayland. Huh? Why shoot themselves in the foot when they've finally gotten things right, just for something that's primarily cosmetic?

Re:Bling (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 2 years ago | (#40601877)

I've tried several releases of Ubuntu over the years, only to give up in frustration at all the configuration needed just to (for example) get wireless to work. Finally, with Precise, Ubuntu "just works" (pretty much) right out of the box.

Yea, unless you have a Broadcom wireless card, like I do...

Know what really sucks about that? The wireless was working fine prior to the Precise upgrade.

Looks like one step forward, two steps back to me.

End of network display? (4, Interesting)

Compaqt (1758360) | about 2 years ago | (#40601819)

That would be sad.

But beyond that: there's one big deficiency of current X applications--if the X server dies, so do all graphical programs.

That's quite surprising when you think about it.

After all the graphical programs are X clients. Why would a client up and die just because some server died?

Does your browser die when a webserver dies?

And please, no pretending that X on Linux doesn't crash. It does, and this is the 4th time I've restarted this laptop today. Hanging hard with VirtualBox.

To sum: If the graphics server crashes, I'd like to see it automatically restart with Upstart, and then the clients automatically reconnect.

Re:End of network display? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601883)

Because then anyone with the access and know-how to crash your X server could effectively hijack your session. It is safer and more secure for X clients to assume that a new session is... well... a new session.

Re:End of network display? (1)

csubi (950112) | about 2 years ago | (#40601947)

X seemed pretty stable for me over the last 5?6?7 years, it was not the bottleneck / lowest common denominator for the usability of the distros I used over the years.

Does your browser die when a webserver dies?

Just don't start your webserver from a terminal you opened while logged in to X.

You know, CTRL+SHFT+_1-6_, log in and start your webserver. Or have it started at boot time. Or put it into background.

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601959)

Let's not forget, network transparency is useful when two people need to use an application that you only have one hardware-tied licence for. (Obviously only one person using it at a time.)

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601963)

I can't think of a reason why widget toolkits couldn't do this. I think they can (and mostly do) maintain all the information about their widgets and windows they need to reconnect to the X server and recreate all the resources (windows, pixmaps, etc.). They just don't.

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602147)

I can't think of a reason why widget toolkits couldn't do this.

There are many, many widget toolkits, from the "heavy hitters" like QT to weird one-off toolkits specific to some app. They will NOT all do this, so it doesn't matter if they can. We will be losing network transparency, a thing many of us NEED.

Re:End of network display? (0)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about 2 years ago | (#40602481)

Will Ubuntu prevent you from running an X server?

Of course being logical would require some facility, which you obviously lack. So I guess I forgive you.

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602787)

You mean, like they prevented me from running gnome 2? quite possible...

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602885)

Will Ubuntu prevent you from running an X server?
Of course being logical would require some facility, which you obviously lack. So I guess I forgive you.

No, but that does not provide the abilities we have today, any more than running an X server under Win7 provides them just because you can display an X app under Windows that way.

But seeing that would require the ability to think logically, which you obviously lack. So I guess I forgive you.

Re:End of network display? (1)

theCoder (23772) | about 2 years ago | (#40602913)

Running an X server only fixes part of the problem. Sure, today, most applications are X clients, and thus running an X server on Wayland will allow for network transparency. But what happens in a few years when many applications start becoming only Wayland clients? I won't be able to ssh somewhere and run the Wayland applications, no matter what server (Wayland and/or X) I'm running locally. And even if someone comes up with a way of forwarding Wayland traffic, what happens when I'm sitting at a machine that only has X installed?

Re:End of network display? (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#40602067)

To sum: If the graphics server crashes, I'd like to see it automatically restart with Upstart, and then the clients automatically reconnect.

I encourage my competitors to implement this, etc etc. You know what would be hilarious? Your buggy hardware (I haven't had a X crash in, I don't even know, certainly more than a decade) combined with root logged in and doing some admin GUI thing. X crashes. Logs itself back in. Before the user gets to interact, the GUI admin thing crashes X again. Repeat infinitely. Oh no problemo just log in as root to break that loop... errr... thats not gonna work because its root who's stuck in the loop. Wipe the hard drive and reinstall?

In ye dark ages of firefox I have run into this, where bringing up some cruddy coded web page full of cruft crashed FF (which admittedly should have failed gracefully, but still, cruft is cruft) and then on restart FF asks if I wanna restore my session. Oh heck no, that's just gonna crash FF again!

On the other hand, given basically bug free client and server software, you've just described the behavior of NFS, AFS, probably a couple other networked filesystems. I've never had to reboot a client because of a server problem in NFS or AFS. The server comes back online and all is well as if nothing happened.

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602823)

I encourage my competitors to implement this, etc etc. You know what would be hilarious? Your buggy hardware (I haven't had a X crash in, I don't even know, certainly more than a decade) combined with root logged in and doing some admin GUI thing. X crashes. Logs itself back in. Before the user gets to interact, the GUI admin thing crashes X again. Repeat infinitely. Oh no problemo just log in as root to break that loop... errr... thats not gonna work because its root who's stuck in the loop. Wipe the hard drive and reinstall?

This is already a solved problem: if the X server fails to start n times in a row (3, I think), then it stops trying.

In ye dark ages of firefox I have run into this, where bringing up some cruddy coded web page full of cruft crashed FF (which admittedly should have failed gracefully, but still, cruft is cruft) and then on restart FF asks if I wanna restore my session. Oh heck no, that's just gonna crash FF again!

Which is why session restore on modern browsers either allows you to choose which pages to restore (Firefox) or at least doesn't load pages that were loaded just before the crash unless you click a button. No reason you couldn't do the same with X clients.

Re:End of network display? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602175)

The Wayland folks say, "You can still run an X server app in Wayland".

Of course, this completely misses the point that this DOES break network transparency of apps.

Re:End of network display? (3, Insightful)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about 2 years ago | (#40602511)

Today, no non-X app is network transparent. Tomorrow, no non-X app will be network transparent.

If nothing is changing, how can something break?

Idiot.

Re:End of network display? (2)

firewrought (36952) | about 2 years ago | (#40602991)

Today, no non-X app is network transparent. Tomorrow, no non-X app will be network transparent.

If nothing is changing, how can something break?

Idiot.

You know what he means. Tomorrow (if Wayland becomes ascendent), the previously X-based API's you use for drawing a GUI will migrate to Wayland and your app will have to either give up network transparency or forgo the latest version (which might be fine at first, but will eventually force you to confront some form of version/dependency/compiler/forking hell). What's "breaking" is the ease of future development...

Of course, I think defenders of X are pretty slow to acknowledge the problems with how X handles network transparency. It's useful to an extent, but the way Microsoft did it with RDP is way more user-friendly.

Re:End of network display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603145)

Why all the hostility? Are you a waveband developer, ubuntu fanboy, or both?

Calling people names may make you feel superior and get you mod points from fellow fanboys, but it really isn't contributing anything positive to the conversation. Instead it is making you look like a child and conveys very little information that would give someone a positive opinion about wayland.

Re:End of network display? (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | about 2 years ago | (#40602413)

And please, no pretending that X on Linux doesn't crash. It does, and this is the 4th time I've restarted this laptop today. Hanging hard with VirtualBox.

Not arguing that at all, but I do have a bit of an issue with the inference that it crashes frequently. I haven't seen X crash on my laptop in several months. VirtualBox provides a rather unique environment.

I'd definitely like to see windows reconnect to X automatically though instead of just dying.

Re:End of network display? (1)

danomac (1032160) | about 2 years ago | (#40602719)

I haven't had X crash in more than two years now. I blame nVidia for the crashes I had before that, though.

Re:End of network display? (1)

devent (1627873) | about 2 years ago | (#40603041)

It's always nice to say "xxxx don't work, don't pretend it works, because it crashes yyy times/day for me". For everyone that starts a discussion like this, there are 100 others for which the xxxx just works and they do their work and are quite.

It would be nice if you share your hardware configuration, or if you open a bug report. Because for me X just works, and it just works for at least 2 years (since I started using Linux) with very different laptops and PCs. I can't recall anytime where X crashed.

There were some issues with Wine after a game; there were some issues with suspend or hibernate. But that is certainly not X11 fault. I never saw that X11 just crashed in a normal usage.

simple question about Wayland (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601855)

Can someone answer this simple question about Wayland?

If I'm on such a Wayland-based system and I have a bash session in a terminal window. Does this continue to work?

[bash prompt]: ssh -X remotehost SomeProgram

Will SomeProgram's GUI be displayed on my local Wayland display, just as with X today, even if SomeProgram uses 3D via OpenGL, just as works today in X.org? And will this work without having to embed everything in some X-server-window type thing like the kludge that Windows uses to display X programs? That is, will SomeProgram appear natively on my desktop just as today?

If not, then this is breaking a fundamental aspect of the Unix architecture going back decades, and should in no way be the default for any mainstream operating system.

If it does work, hey, great.

Re:simple question about Wayland (1)

Bitsy Boffin (110334) | about 2 years ago | (#40602277)

It does not work. Last I heard the answer was "use VNC" or some such nonsense.

Replacing X is one thing, replacing it with an inferior product however is ludicrous. Ludicrous is unfortunately something that Ubuntu is quite adept at :-(

Re:simple question about Wayland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602361)

Thanks for the answer Bitsy Boffin. That really sucks - it was what I was afraid of.

We depend on this feature in a production environment, so we will need to transition to a non-Wayland based distro :-(.

Re:simple question about Wayland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602807)

It does not work. Last I heard the answer was "use VNC" or some such nonsense.

I've been tracking this too, and that's the last thing I heard out of Wayland. No, it doesn't work, but you can try this unusable kludge. VNC has its uses, but a bitmap-level app display is in no way a replacement for a protocol-level one as we have today. I use VNC, but it's not even remotely a replacement.

Say this to the Wayland people, pointing out the problems with such a VNC solution, and their answer is something like, "LALALALA can't hear you!"

Re:simple question about Wayland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602455)

Someone should mod this up. It really needs to be widely understood that Wayland breaks this.

Re:simple question about Wayland (-1, Troll)

Dog-Cow (21281) | about 2 years ago | (#40602525)

You are an idiot. Go away.

Re:simple question about Wayland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40603195)

You are acting like a child. STFU.

Re:simple question about Wayland (3, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 2 years ago | (#40602707)

It will work if SomeProgram is an X program, just as it does on OS X or Windows if you have an X server installed. It won't work if SomeProgram is a Wayland program. Wayland eliminates a number of process boundaries in X, moving the window and compositing managers into the main executable. This is done for performance reasons, presumably by people who have never profiled an X server and therefore not noticed that these round trips are not a bottleneck in modern systems, and at the expense of stability (if your compositing manager crashes in Wayland, your display server also dies, with X11 it can be restarted, usually without any data loss).

Re:simple question about Wayland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602997)

OS X or Windows if you have an X server installed.

I'm going to argue it *doesn't* work under Windows, even with an X server installed. Sure, you can run an X based program by running an X server on your Windows desktop, but that's not the same thing. I know, because I do it all the time. The same will be true in Wayland: you'll be able to run an X server on top of it, but that won't provide the same abilities that we have today. Your analogy to the "X server under Windows" is a good one, but I don't think it shows what you think it shows.

Wayland will NOT be replacing X11 in 12.10 (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601893)

Canonical has plans to include Wayland as a technical preview in 12.10, not as a replacement for X11. This means that they have to actually get it working at a basic level before putting it in the repositories. While Canonical is pushing Wayland, they've already said that it's still several years away from becoming a viable replacement for X11. This is just Canonical trying to push forward the development of a peice of software they believe in.

Will it even work with common setups? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40601971)

Will it work with my system that has two nVidia cards running a quad monitor setup?

Will I be able to use the nVidia driver with full acceleration for all my high powered video cards? Especially OpenGL and OpenCL/CUDA support is very important for the work I do. That Manuto (nouveau) boy-band crap isn't going to cut it.

I can tell you right now that my setup doesn't work in Unity, nor GNOME 3. Hell, it barely works in X.org at all and not very well at that (I don't get compositing, OpenGL only works on two of the monitors, etc). I somehow doubt it's going to work in Wayland.

I haven't used Windows as my primary OS in more than 15 years, maybe I need to take a look at it again. I do know multi-monitor support is a hell of a lot better in Windows 7 (and OS X for that matter) than in X.org. X.org sucks so maybe Wayland could fix that, I have my doubts though considering how poorly Unity works for even basic features.

Re:Will it even work with common setups? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602165)

No, since nvidia won't support it since the *nix customers they actually care about (VFX studios, CAD users, GPU compute customers, etc.) don't use blingy desktops.

not supported (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602141)

wayland is not supported by nvidia and amd/ati

Still works (1)

snadrus (930168) | about 2 years ago | (#40602665)

Support arrows go the other way. Wayland uses X11's direct rendering which is works great for ATI in 2.6.38 & for Nouveau (open-source NVidia driver). NVidia's the "worst-supported", but it still runs, just at slightly slower than it should.

They should start with updating X (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602267)

Ubuntu's X11 package hasn't been updated to the latest version [launchpad.net] . Before thinking about Wayland, they should at least take properly care of X11.

Re:They should start with updating X (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602315)

Ubuntu is about churn and pushing out new shinies not fixing bugs and other boring stuff.

Why Wayland? (1)

JDG1980 (2438906) | about 2 years ago | (#40602291)

I understand that X11 is obsolete crap and has to go, but why are they using Wayland instead of, say, DirectFB? From what I can tell (please correct me if I'm wrong, Linux really isn't my thing) DirectFB is much better supported and a more mature product.

Re:Why Wayland? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602483)

Because mature software is dumb and doesn't allow the Wayland people all the fun of starting from scratch.

Re:Why Wayland? (1)

snadrus (930168) | about 2 years ago | (#40602809)

DirectFB has severe limitations that can't be "fixed", and even X11 provides more than it offers: Input handling, multi-monitor, hardware acceleration. Wayland allows zero-copy handoffs of a buffer to the server (through video card memory) which can then use harware acceleration to compose into a final multi-window image. Many toolkits already render buffers on the video card, so keeping the data there results in fewer copies. Even cell-phones have hardware acceleration now, so keeping images in video ram is just logical.

nVidia/AMD will NOT support wayland (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40602559)

Please note: neither nVidia nor AMD has any plans to support their high performance drivers natively under Wayland.

That means you will be limited to low performance Intel graphics, or low performance open source drivers that don't provide many modern OpenGL features.

Wayland is a non-starter if it doesn't have either of the two heavy-hitter graphics makers on board.

yeah right (1)

FranTaylor (164577) | about 2 years ago | (#40603623)

Steve Ballmer once called Linux a cancer and now Microsoft writes kernel drivers

How is life in your reality where time stands still and nothing ever changes?

Sometimes... (1)

drjones78 (961270) | about 2 years ago | (#40602607)

... I woefully wonder if I'm the only one who has the fastidious feeling that the noritious names for Ubuntu releases are idiosyncratically idiotic and horrendously horrible
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